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Shocking Tragedy at Plymouth.

Plymouth has been the scene of a murder and a suicide of a peculiarly startling and horrible character. The facts for some hours remained obscure, but the coroner’s inquest held the same evening elicited them. They are these : —Harriet Marker, the daughter of a Plymouth lithographer, 12 years ago—being 18— married a naval petty officer named Lawrence. He went to sea for several years, allowing her no maintenance. After the first few months she lived as a dressmaker at Manchester, Liverpool, and latterly at Chester. She had two children, one by the officer ; the other is called by her maiden name. For a few years past she had lived at Chester, at a Mr M'Clean’s, passing as Mrs Gregory, of the Mews, Queen’s Hotel, Chester. Lately her husband returned, came to Plymouth, and was reconciled to his wife at her father’s house, promising to support her. Last week he returned to Portsmouth, his wife remaining at her father’s, engaged by day at a draper’s. On Sunday morning Gregory, who left Chester on the previous night, arrived at Plymouth, went to her house, and she went out with him for the day. The morning of the tragedy she started for business as usual, but was met by Gregory, who persuaded her to go with him to an hotel, and there, he cut her throat and his own. The noise of her falling elicited help, when Gregory was seen cutting his own throat, which he succeeded in doing after a struggle with a porter, who had rushed into the room. The coroner’s jury returned a verdict of wilful murder against Gregory finding also that he committed suicide while of unsound mind.

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Shocking Tragedy at Plymouth. Ashburton Guardian, Volume I, Issue 15, 30 October 1879

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